Yesterday I took advantage og the guided tour of Target Marine Hatchery at Grey Creek. We were 25 in the group. Robert Haines, Operations Manager gave first an orientation and history of the company and its production. See attached info sheet.
Then he took us on a tour, first to the hatchery building, where they incubate the sturgeon eggs, and keep the small fingerlings until they are feeding properly. On to the various tanks , all with recycled water, pumped from the many wells. One interesting fact is that the ground water is part saline, to great benefit of raising the fish.
Robert also showed us the Coho broodstock. They have raised Chinook and Coho for the last 24 years. These Coho have never been to the ocean, and are prized for broadstock. Unfortunately, they are phasing the salmon part out in 2012.
The most impressive was the visit to the large holding tanks for the adult Sturgeon, up to 150 lb. and almost seven feet long. Before entering the buildings, you have to walk through a foot bath, to disinfect the shoe soles, and to the large production building, you have to put on plastic covers over your shoes. Cleanliness is a virtue at this place.
At the end of the tour Robert explained the use for the new building that they have applied building permit for, it seemed like just a natural and necessary part of the business. Tuvanek homes are one km. away, and no neighbor can possible se, hear or smell any of this operation, because it as neat and clean as cn be.
One lady participating in the tour, said at the end, that her coffeemaker made more noise than the whole hatchery operation, she was right, and probably had a great coffeemaker.
I was so impressed that I was compelled to sit down and write my very first letter to the editor, just to remind the new Sechelt Council mayor and members to take an interest in their business community, and give Target Marine all the support they deserve.